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The Cubs City Connect jerseys are a tribute to all of Chicago’s neighborhoods

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Will they resonate with fans?

Cubs players in City Connect jerseys
Steve Green/Chicago Cubs

It’s tremendously unfortunate that someone leaked a photo of the Cubs City Connect jerseys last week before the team could unveil them. Every other team has gotten to control the rollout of their jerseys, explaining the connections between iconic events like the Boston Marathon and the Boston Red Sox, or the importance of Cubano teams like the Sugar Kings to Miami’s baseball history. I imagine if the first thing fans had seen of the Cubs City Connect jerseys was this video, the reaction would have been generally positive:

But it wasn’t. The first images we all saw of the Cubs City Connect jerseys were these poorly-lit pictures in a warehouse with zero explanation or context for the decisions made in the design:

Let’s start with the elements of the jersey - it’s a dark navy with powder trim. The word “Wrigleyville” takes center stage. The patch on the sleeve is the Chicago “Y” logo with the city’s iconic stars highlighted. That patch is brilliant and a step beyond just incorporating the logo generally. Also, if you look closely you’ll see some red font at the bottom. If you zoom in you’ll see this:

Respect Our Neighborhood
MLB

This is a stroke of brilliance as far as I’m concerned. If you’ve spent any time in Wrigleyville you know these signs are everywhere — basically begging young fans barhopping through the neighborhood to stay quiet and avoid passing out in their yards. But on this jersey it has a double meaning and reminds me of this Rizzo moment:

The Cubs explained their decision-making as follows: “One of the pillars of the Cubs organization is to ‘be a good neighbor,” said Cubs Vice President of Marketing Lauren Fritts. “We’re aware of the impact we have not only on the neighborhood surrounding us, but on all of Chicago’s 77 neighborhoods. Cubs fans don’t just reside on the North Side, and the work we do as an organization and through Cubs Charities isn’t specific to just one neighborhood. Rather than simply unveil a new jersey, we wanted to use City Connect as a platform to unite our diverse city and celebrate those doing good in their neighborhood.”

The Cubs will use the jersey rollout to celebrate the uniqueness of Chicago’s 77 neighborhoods by highlighting nine local organizations and youth programs making an impact in their community. The first organization, Young Chicago Authors, will be recognized this Saturday, June 12, when the Cubs debut their new Nike Cubs City Connect Jersey. Young Chicago Authors will be followed by Test Positive Aware Network (TPAN), YWCA Metropolitan Chicago, Healthy Hot Free Meals, SkyART, Inter-American Magnet School, Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN), New Life Centers of Chicagoland and UCAN Chicago.

I love that the Cubs have committed to more than just a jersey here, and I look forward to learning more about their work around the city. My only design quibble is that I think I might have flipped the powder and navy for two reasons. First, it’s a more obvious nod to the Chicago flag, which is clearly the intent of the uniform. Second, it would have been a nice homage to previous Cubs teams who wore powder blue.

I think the Cubs hit a home run with the hat, which I imagine will be popular around the city:

City Connect Hat
MLB

The collateral gear beyond the jerseys is also outstanding. I particularly like this jacket and may break my own rule of only buying women’s cuts because of it:

Cubs City Connect Jacket
MLB

Cubs City Connect gear is on sale in person and online now. You can view the whole collection here.

So have at it, Cubs fans. What do you think of these new Chicago-inspired jerseys? Vote below and tell us what you’re thinking in the comments.

Poll

What do you think of the new Cubs City Connect jerseys?

This poll is closed

  • 47%
    Yea - Love them!
    (216 votes)
  • 16%
    Nay - Hate them!
    (73 votes)
  • 36%
    Meh
    (167 votes)
456 votes total Vote Now